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The Polk Bros. Foundation Affordable Rental Housing Preservation Award

Uptown – an ethnically and economically diverse community – was a logical place for one of Chicago’s first long-term supportive housing facilities – the Harold Washington Apartments, a 1930s building at Sheridan and Argyle, renovated by Lakefront SRO in 1989.

While always fully occupied, in recent years the Harold Washington Apartments needed to be repaired and renovated. Drawing on its vast experience operating supportive housing, Mercy Housing Lakefront took on the renovation of the historic building to create a space that could meet the needs of disabled, at-risk and low-income tenants.

Today, following a “green” renovation that earned Mercy Housing Lakefront a LEED Gold certification, the Harold Washington Apartments is more comfortable than ever and, just as important, more cost-efficient to operate. All 69 apartments now have private bathrooms, sitting rooms and en suite kitchens. The building boasts a new laundry room and elevator. A computer lab and employment/training center connect residents to opportunities for education, jobs and a better future.

For its creative commitment to preservation that serves the future, Mercy Housing Lakefront is the recipient of the Polk Bros. Foundation Affordable Rental Housing Preservation Award.